Android Now Top Dog Tablet OS With 62 Percent Market Share

Call it a war of attrition if you will, but when it comes to tablet warfare, Android simply has a bigger army. Partially for that reason, Google's open source Android platform now claims the largest share of tablets at just shy of 62 percent (61.9 percent, to be precise), well ahead of iOS (iPad and iPad mini devices) at 36 percent, according to the latest data published by Gartner.

Consumers around the world purchased over 195 million tablets in 2013, representing a 68 percent increase compared to 2012. The tremendous growth was driven by lower-end devices with smaller screens and cheaper price tags, which is not an area Apple really competes in.

Samsung Galaxy Note Pro

"In 2013, tablets became a mainstream phenomenon, with a vast choice of Android-based tablets being within the budget of mainstream consumers while still offering adequate specifications," said Roberta Cozza, research director at Gartner. "As the Android tablet market becomes highly commoditized, in 2014, it will be critical for vendors to focus on device experience and meaningful technology and ecosystem value — beyond just hardware and cost — to ensure brand loyalty and improved margins."

The tablet landscape looks quite a bit different than it did in 2012. Two years ago, Apple was still in the lead with iPad devices accounting for 52.8 percent of all tablets. Meanwhile, Android was close second with a 45.8 percent share of the market followed by Microsoft claiming a mere 1 percent stake.

Even though Android is the most dominant platform in terms of shipments, Apple still sells more tablets than any other vendor. The Cupertino outfit sold over 70.4 million iPad devices in all of 2013. Samsung came in a distant second with 37.4 million tablet sales, followed by Asus (11 million), Amazon (9.4 million), and Lenovo (6.5 million).